Let’s start with a fair opening. Even as a sales and marketing company, we were affected bythe COVID19 lockdown. In March and April, we faced delays on existing leads and there was no lead generation, no new leads were coming in. It was really a lockdown. A shock to the market.
Since May, however, it has been all hands on deck. We find that IT companies do see the budget constraints (read our blog on: The Challenge of hours business in Crisis times) among their (potential) customers. Companies have already spent much of their 2020 IT budget. To home work solutions, however, this was not planned. So IT budgets for other investments also get squeezed.
As a Sales Manager at an IT company, you may have to deal with the same thing. The funnel is getting smaller and smaller, and new leads are hard to find. And who is responsible for lead generation? Is lead generation a sales or marketing responsibility? Well, it affects your funnel?
So yes, lead generation is also a sales job. So the most obvious thing to do is to use your sales team for lead generation to bring new leads into the funnel. Or as a basis for charge generation, call off older leads from one or even two years ago. We see some sales managers even telling their team to start cold calling. I’m not saying this doesn’t generate leads, but have you looked at the ratios of that approach?
Why not give your teams the ability to use three fairly simple and easy-to-implement tool-supported methods?
1. ABC – Always Be Contributing
At the conclusion of targeted sales, we know ABC differently (watch the sales film Glengarry Glen Ross and you’ll know). Your sales team needs to start sharing content. Relevant content!Relevant to your target audience.
Another marketing job? Well, content creation is normally a marketing task. But why wait? The best way for your sales to create interest and leads is to share personalized content and ideas. They are in your industry, so they also have a personal opinion, right?
Another option for your sales team is to find relevant content online. You can automate this through Google Alerts, or even easier, through Feedly.
Sharing this content is the next step. The best way to do this is through Marketing Automation or a CRM tool. This allows you to track activity, and what is resonating and what is not. But even without these tools, you can share the information via email or social media. This way you stay in touch with your target audience which leads to lead generation.
2. ABR – Always Be Relating
LinkedIn is one of the most powerful B2B social media tools. So your sales teams should use it as well. It is a relationship/content tool. So it is best to use it for that. First, of course, for the ABC approach; second, to expand the network.
The network of your sales teams is immense. If you look at the character of their relationship. By starting to share within their 1st line contacts, 2nd line and even 3rd line contacts are triggered or even activated.
Expanding their network and approaching new contacts on LinkedIn helps for awareness and also for lead generation. LinkedIn Premium and Sales Navigator certainly help, but this has its price. There are many other tools to support this, such as Guru, Crystal, Dux-Soup, Scrab.in, Lusha and many others. Dive into this, having relationships that empower your ABC creates lead generation!
3. ABS – Always Be Spotting
Lead generation is about influencing your target audience. To contact you to help them with their business problems. You can do this by creating awareness. And trigger their latent need through content sharing. But, wouldn’t it be great to just spot opportunities when they are explicit? Direct prospects’ needs to your sales when they are looking for a solution?
You can do this by empowering your organization and relationships. Getting more eyes and ears in the market. The easiest way to achieve this is to empower your colleagues. As an IT company, your staff has a lot of substantive IT knowledge. These colleagues frequently speak with you customers and are aware of any new needs. Inventory these needs.
But your contacts’ contacts can also be powerful in spotting opportunities. Either in professional networks or in social, sporting networks. For example, strengthening your soccer club and having all members generate leads, and having the club rewarded for it?
We don’t know of many tools that enable social/employee lead generation. But we do know one: LeadX. A Norwegian company that has a simple solution for registering leads. Passing them on to the sales department and rewarding the handing over of the lead. Your eyes and ears in the market are activated immediately. LeadX White paper Download.
There are many more tips and tricks to use your sales for charge generation. Of course, it all starts with their attitude. They must have a natural disposition to want to create business for themselves.
We are open to sharing more details on how to empower your team to create the difference in sales for your organization. Contact us for an open dialogue about creating sales opportunities.